Cyprus Mail

Police scrutinising mayor’s comments in land zoning case

Paphos Mayor Savvas Vergas (left)

By George Psyllides

AUTHORITIES were going over the answers given by Paphos Mayor Savvas Vergas regarding threatening text messages sent in a suspicious land zoning case before deciding their next actions, it emerged on Saturday.

Vergas was questioned for over six hours on Friday over threatening text messages sent to four people, including himself, connected with a suspicious land zoning case involving Aristo Developers.

“Answers were given by the Paphos mayor and the content of his statement is being assessed by the investigators,” police spokesman Andreas Angelides said.

His responses will be checked against the statements given by suspects in police custody and other witness information received as part of the investigation into the affair, Angelides said.

The mayor was questioned for almost seven hours at the town’s CID.

He left the station just before 11pm without saying anything but he told the state broadcaster later that he had co-operated with investigators and gave detailed answers to their questions.

Vergas was linked to the case through a close aide, Maria Solomonidou, 33, currently in police custody, together with her 64-year-old father, in connection with the messages.

Vergas had admitted buying Solomonidou the phone that was later used to send the messages.

He denies any wrongdoing.

It is understood that he had been asked if he had ever used the phone himself and his whereabouts when he received the threatening message on September 28.

The other recipients were a Paphos municipal councillor, an employee of the local authority, and a journalist.

Solomonidou is the sister of Aristo Developers designer Christos Solomonides, arrested along with his boss, Theodoros Aristodemou, the latter’s wife Roulla, and former municipal engineer Savvas Savva, in connection with forgery and fraud in the demarcation of 177 plots of land on behalf of the company.

The arrests followed a police investigation into the demarcation that took place in Skali, Paphos, in 2010.

It emerged that the plans for which the demarcation permits were issued were switched with new plans, which seemed to cede approximately 3,000 square metres, worth hundreds of thousands of euros, previously designated as green space, back to Aristo Developers.




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